With all the interest in my new book ‘THE FAT CHEF’ I figured I’d show a little food enthusiasm myself. We eat out fairly regularlyand so I know a few restaurants in my area of Middlesbrough and North Yorkshire and will recommend a couple you may or may not know about. If you ever visit up here, then they will be worth a visit. I would put them in three ranges, Cheap and Cheerful, moderately expensive and pricey. Click on the links to view their menus but not on an empty stomach!
First off there is ‘Da Vinci’ on Yarm High Street. Prices are rock-bottom. If you go very early they have an early bird menu and there is a lunch menu that is terrific for under fifteen quid for two. They also field a superb á la carte menu with typical Italian nuances. Me? I like their spaghetti and meatballs – fantastic! Although prices are low, service is reasonable and the food terrific!
In the medium price range, we have Chadwick’s Inn in Maltby -a ten minute drive out of Yarm. The name has been associated with good food for a long time around here. The Original Chadwicks was on Yarm High Street and served as a Continental Café with stunning food and wine. They sold out and changed (I’ll come to that later) and within a year, the name and ambience moved to the premises where they are now (which used to be a pub called ‘The Pathfinder’). So what’s special here? They sell the best fillet steak in the world, they make a confit rabbit ravioli that is stunning(not popular with rabbits though). Lunchtimes are enticing. They do a set price menu where you can choosebetween one, two or three courses for less than twenty pounds and the quality and choice is excellent. Their crayfish open sandwich is bute mate! You can also get a great bar meal in the 'pub/bistro' area. I’ve eaten at Claridges and I can tell you the food at Chadwicks Inn is better!
Also in the mid-priced range is Muse Continental Café on Yarm High Street. It’s only been there about a year but is building a great reputation. A pleasant unhurried atmosphere and attentive service make this place a great choice. Good range of starters and amazing sweets combined with a very good entrées list makes this a great place to eat. The wine list could be better but hell who wants to spend the money these days?
Judges Hotel is always excellent – wish I could go more often. The service is perfect, the food always prepared from fresh ingredients and never over-filling. The wine list is adequate. I’ve enjoyed a lot of meals there over the years.
Crathorne Hall is one of the loveliest country houses around here and I’ve promised myself if I win the Euro Lottery I’ll go live there! The service is great, the food always a pleasure and the environment fantastic. The wine list? Well it used to be superb back in the ‘old days’ now it is good.
So the verdict? Chadwicks remains my favourite –ambience, food and wine and really pleasant service. Who could ask for anything more!